Employment for Women in Construction Continues to Rise

The number of women employed in the construction industry grew substantially in 2019, rising to around 1.2 million.

(This article is as posted on www.builderonline.com September 14, 2020.)

The National Association of Home Builders reports the number of women employed in the construction industry grew substantially in 2019, surpassing the peak of the pre-recession employment level of 1.13 million. Using labor force statistics from the Current Population Survey, the NAHB determined the number of female construction workers declined sharply by almost 30% during the Great Recession and slowly expanded to 970,000 from 2010 to 2017. The new 2019 total of almost 1.2 million is up 6% from 2018 and 13% from 2017.

Overall, the share of women in construction increased to 10.3% in 2019. According to the Current Population Survey, women in the construction are mostly involved in such occupations as office and administrative support, management, business, and financial operations. Sales and office occupations employed the largest number of women within the construction industry. For example, women accounted for 74% of workers in sales and office occupations, including 446,000 women in office and administrative support, and 35,000 in sales and related occupations in 2019. More than 418,000 women were engaged in management, professional, and related occupations.

While construction and maintenance occupations account for the largest number of employees in construction, and is where additional workers are needed, women comprised only 3% of the such occupations. More improvement is needed here. Other groups such as production, transportation, and material moving occupations, and service occupations employed only around 9,000 female workers.

Pictured: Rebecca Penrod, Director of Marketing & Business Development at Mather Architects (left) and Arianna Williams, Marketing & Communications Director at Lantz Construction Company (right).